The land of Da Vinci, of Caesar, of Michelangelo and David, of Caravaggio, the land of never-ending coastal cities, breathtaking views, the land of love and endless bellezza… Who doesn’t love Italy? Of all the countries in this world, Italy is probably the one you should visit at least once in your life. From nature to art, history, and culture, Italy is entirely una grande bellezza (“a great beauty”). So why wait? Why not book your ticket right now? To save you the trouble of searching for Italian phrasebooks all over the internet, we’ve put together a must-have guide of basic Italian phrases. Whether you are going to practice by yourself, or want to go serious and start taking lessons with a private Italian tutor, read this list on and don’t forget to bookmark it!
If after reading this list you are determined to master this beautiful language, we have a nifty guide to learning Italian language, from the beginner’s level to the actual fluency.
Italian greetings and courtesy phrases
Let’s start with the basics: greetings, apologies, and thanks. No matter if you want to learn German, Spanish, Italian, or any other language, basic greetings are immensely helpful in communicating with locals who don’t speak English.
But remember not to stress it. You don’t have to speak the language to perfection. Mastering a few Italian expressions and words will already be regarded as a sign of respect towards their culture.
- Good morning! – Buongiorno!
- Good afternoon! – Buon pomeriggio!
- Good evening! – Buonasera!
- Good night! – Buonanotte!
- Hello! – Salve!
- Hi! – Ciao!
- How are you? – Come stai?
- Very good, thank you. – Molto bene, grazie.
- What is your name? – Come ti chiami?
- My name is _____. – Mi chiamo _____.
- Nice to meet you. – Piacere.
- Please. – Per piacere.
- Thank you. – Grazie.
- I’m sorry. – Mi dispiace.
- You’re welcome. – Prego.
- Excuse me. – Mi scusi.
- No problem. – Non c’è problema.
- Speak slowly. – Parli lentamente.
- Have a good day. – Buona giornata.
Common airport phrases in Italian
Both at the beginning and at the end of your Italian trip, arriving at the airport might also require some basic Italian skills. So here are some of the most common phrases that will help you answer the questions at the customs or ask for information about your flight.
- Your passports, please. – I vostri passaporti, per favore.
- Here you are. – Eccoli.
- We are travelling together. – Stiamo viaggiando insieme.
- We need help boarding the plane. – Abbiamo bisogno di aiuto per salire a bordo dell’aereo.
- Is the flight delayed? – Il volo è in ritardo?
- Is the flight cancelled? – Il volo è cancellato?
- When is the next flight to Rome? – Quando parte il prossimo aereo per Roma?
- I am missing some luggage. – Mi manca qualche bagaglio.
- Is this seat taken? – È occupato questo posto?
- I would like to change my seat. – Vorrei cambiare posto.
Asking for help in Italian
How do you ask someone for directions in Italian?
Well, good news! It’s easier than you’d think! Locals are usually very nice to tourists, so just in case you need help and they don’t speak your language, here are some basic Italian phrases that will certainly save your day at some point.
- Could you help me, please? – Potrebbe aiutarmi, per favore?
- Where is the airport, please? – Dov’è l’aeroporto, per favore?
- Where is the bus station, please? – Dov’è la stazione degli autobus, per favore?
- Where is a bank, please? – Dov’è una banca, per favore?
- Where can I find a taxi? – Dove posso trovare un taxi?
- Where is the toilet? – Dov’è la toilette?
- Where can I buy tickets? – Dove posso comprare i biglietti?
- Where is a pharmacy? – Dov’è una farmacia?
- Where is a supermarket? – Dov’è un supermercato?
- Drive me to this address. – Mi porti a questo indirizzo.
- Please stop here. – Si fermi qui, per favore.
- Please wait a moment. – Aspetti un momento, per favore.
- I’ll be back immediately. – Ritorno subito.
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Italian phrases you’ll need at the hotel’s reception
Depending on what type of accommodation you’ll choose during your holiday, human interaction may be required. For example, your host Domenico in Tropea may be an incredibly nice person, but English might not be his strongest skill so you’ll be able to just switch to Italian. If you aren’t able to do that, you may miss out on loads of valuable advice on what and when to visit.
- I have booked a room. – Ho prenotato una camera.
- This room is too noisy. – Questa camera è troppo rumorosa.
- Is there a problem? – C’è qualche problema?
- The sink is broken. – Il lavandino è rotto.
- Is there a locker for my things? – C’è un armadietto per le mie cose?
- When is check-out time? – A che ora si deve lasciare la camera?
- Thank you for your help. – Grazie dell’aiuto.
- How was your stay with us? – Come è stato il suo soggiorno con noi?
- Very pleasant, thank you. – Molto piacevole, grazie.
- Here is your bill, please look it over. – Ecco il suo conto, per favore lo controlli.
Basic Italian phrases for food lovers
Experiencing local cuisine is one of the best parts of any trip. You have to admit it. Who doesn’t just looove to try different kinds of pizza, pasta, minestrone, ciabatta, gelato, risotto, lasagna, and many, many more Italian delicacies? The mouth starts watering even if you’re only thinking of them.
- I have a reservation. My name is _____. – Ho una prenotazione. Mi chiamo _____.
- I would like to cancel my reservation. – Vorrei annullare la mia prenotazione.
- I would like to change my reservation. – Vorrei cambiare la mia prenotazione.
- We are ready to order. – Siamo pronti a ordinare.
- We would like two glasses of wine. – Vorremmo due bicchieri di vino.
- I’d like something without meat. – Vorrei qualcosa senza carne.
- I’d like a mineral water. – Vorrei un’acqua minerale.
- I’d like an orange juice. – Vorrei un succo d’arancia.
- I would like a tea with lemon. – Vorrei un tè al limone.
- I would like a coffee. – Vorrei un caffè.
- I would like a salad. – Vorrei un’insalata.
- I would like a soup. – Vorrei una minestra.
- No sugar. – Senza zucchero.
- Some salt and pepper also, please. – Anche del sale e del pepe, per favore.
- I would like a dessert. – Vorrei un dolce.
Common Italian phrases for party starters
Want to get to know the city by night? Here are some basic Italian phrases to help you get the party started.
- Is there a pub here? – C’è un pub qui vicino?
- There’s a free rock concert in the park. – C’è un concerto rock gratuito al parco.
- Would you like to dance? – Vorresti ballare?
- Are tickets for the theatre still available? – Ci sono ancora biglietti per il teatro?
- How much does a ticket cost, please? – Quanto costa un biglietto, per favore?
- One ticket, please. – Un biglietto, per favore.
- Let’s have some fun. – Andiamo a divertirci.
- Let’s go dancing. – Andiamo a ballare.
- Let’s go to a night-club. – Andiamo in un locale notturno.
Basic shopping phrases in Italian
The drudgery of looking for souvenirs always haunts us while on holiday. So why don’t you just rip off the bandage and get it over with the first day you’re there? Here are some basic phrases to help you “close the deal” in no time.
- How much does it cost? – Quanto costa?
- What would you like? – Cosa vorresti?
- I would like _____. – Vorrei _____.
- How much are they? – Quanto costano?
- Can I have a receipt? – Posso avere una ricevuta?
- Can I have some ice cream? – Posso prendere il gelato?
Italian love phrases
You never know when love strikes. What if it happens while on a holiday in Rome? And you know what they say: “When in Rome, do as Romans do!”. In other words, let love warm your heart and love back.
So learn these love phrases and make sure you are ready for Cupid’s arrow.
- I’d like to see you again. – Mi piacerebbe rivederti.
- I’d like that very much. – Piacerebbe molto anche a me.
- You are very beautiful. – Sei molto bella.
- You are very handsome. – Sei molto bello.
- May I kiss you? – Posso baciarti?
- May I hold your hand? – Posso tenerti la mano?
- I like you a lot. – Mi piaci molto.
- Are you single? – Sei single?
- I’m married. – Sono sposato.
- I’m not interested. – Non sono interessato.
- Would you like to go out this evening? – Vorresti uscire questa sera?
- Would you like to have dinner with me? – Vorresti venire a cena con me?
- I love you. – Ti amo.